Fitzy knew when we agreed the two paintings that I’m currently doing for him that if I had other deadline commissions, that they would take precedence over the timing for his artwork, and was happy with that possibility. The only reason I said it was because I knew the artwork that I’m doing for Fitzy is going to take a while to paint, as I’m having to do two working paintings before I start the two canvas’s proper. And, sure enough, soon after I started work, I was asked to paint a picture for a birthday in May, so I’ve got a deadline, just as I predicted! LOL
The painting in question is totally different to the ones I’m doing for Fitzy, as it’s Elliot. And Elliot is a bit different to Fitzy. He has lovely long black hair, he has brown eyes, a bit of a beard, long nose, big ears, and four feet. Well, hooves really. Because Elliot is………… a horse. I met him a couple of weeks ago when I was asked to go and see him and take photos for the portrait I’m doing of him. I duly went along at the arranged time, feeding time infact, as that was deemed the part of the day when he was more likely to be amenable to a stranger taking photos of his best side. Of course, he was curious to start with, but soon got bored of the tiresome task of having to lift his head AND look intelligent AND look the right way AND have his ears forward AND not be eating whilst he was doing it. So he kept wandering off. The back end of a horse is not that photogenic, so I had to get to the right end, rather than the wrong end, and try to photograph him in the the right light, with all the aforementioned posing involved too!
I’ve NEVER taken so many photos of one thing before. Photo. Photo. Photo. Photo………..Photo. Photo……………
After taking endless shots I thought at least a few of them would be right, but on getting home I found that only one fit the criteria of him looking around, with ears forward, looking curious and friendly, not eating, not side on, and not full on. Phew. Do all super models have this problem, I wonder? LOL
Well, no matter, one photo was all I needed. And that is what I’ve been working from, and this is the painting I’ve done, in acrylic on line and wash board. Acrylics are the best thing to use for animal portraits, as you can build up the light hairs on dark background, dark hairs on light background that is the animal. And that is how you get the character of the animal too. I think I’ve got a good likeness to Elliot, I just hope the person who is receiving this as a birthday present thinks so too……………….. She’s not seen it yet. The bit I like best, is the bit of flicked paint around his mane, that makes him look like he’s moving a bit, and the white blow of air below his mouth, that makes him look alive. Well, the intelligent eyes, the right shape for a horses head, the colours, the nuances of tone of his hair all help too of course!!!!! LOL